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Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines Review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 4.0

    out of 100

    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 50

    out of 100

    USA Today Mike Clark

    Begins promisingly and entertains for a stretch because you think it's leading to something more than one of the movie year's flattest conclusions.

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  • 70

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    The brute force of Terminator 3 is relieved, I'm happy to say, by Claire Danes's winning performance as John Connor's reluctant accomplice (whom the production notes describe, not inaccurately, as an "unsuspecting veterinarian"); by many of the special effects, which don't seem obsolete at all, and, yes, by the sinister trix of the Terminatrix.

  • 70

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Kirk Honeycutt

    Lacks the wonder, surprises and supercool attitude Cameron achieved. "T3" is no weak sister, though. With Arnold Schwarzenegger back as the iconic title character and an often witty, fast-paced script by John Brancato, Michael Ferris and Tedi Sarafian, audiences worldwide will embrace the new film.

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  • 75

    out of 100

    Chicago Tribune Mark Caro

    Against all odds this "Terminator" deserves to be welcomed back.

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  • 83

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    With him (Schwarzenegger), we return to a franchise we never knew we missed, surprisingly grateful for the star's generosity -- and evident pleasure -- in strapping on the old sunglasses and blasting adversaries to hell.

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  • See all Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Pause for kids 14 & under

Basically one long, exciting chase scene.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this film has profanity, violence (often with a sense of humor), edge-of-your-seat car chases and some mighty scary robots. There is a minimal amount of nudity in brief scenes, but both are shot from a distance and heavily shadowed. There is also a very sad death of a parent. But what has changed is that younger and younger kids want to see these movies that a few years ago were off their radars. Now, thanks to endless marketing, these tweens want to see these R rated action moves. Know that if you let your 10 year-old watch (and many will) that he or she is in for a side shot of a naked woman, extremely graphic violence, and really rough language.

  • Families can talk about how we weigh the risks of technology.

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: Conflict resolution means killing.

What to watch for
  • violence false3

    Violence: Intense action sequences, characters killed. Intense peril and some mighty scary robots.

  • sex false2

    Sex: The terminators show up on the planet naked from the side.

  • language false2

    Language: Some strong language.

  • consumerism false0

    Consumerism: Not applicable

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false2

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Character steals drugs.